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News from Austria

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Re: News from Austria

Post  bb1 on Wed May 17, 2017 9:16 pm

Oh, lucky Austrians! Yet more squabbling politicians hogging the airwaves and papers!

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Re: News from Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Wed May 17, 2017 9:20 pm

bb1 wrote:Oh, lucky Austrians! Yet more squabbling politicians hogging the airwaves and papers!
Par for the course! LL Sleep Sleep
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Re: News from Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Sat Jun 03, 2017 3:33 pm

Austrian court jails parents who took kids to live under IS.

An Austrian court on Friday sentenced to up to 10 years in jail two couples who took their children to live in an IS-controlled part of Syria and showed them execution videos.

The two men and their wives travelled to Syria with their eight children -- the youngest of whom was two years old -- in December 2014, the trial in the southern city Graz heard.

Housed by the Islamic State extremist group, the children had to watch the gruesome videos for initiation and one seven-year-old boy was even present at a beheading.

Defendant Hasan O., 49, denied in court being a member of IS and said that he worked as a masseur treating injured fighters.

"I heard in the mosque (in Graz) that you can live according to Islam there, with freedom for the women and children," he told the trial.

He just wanted to spend "10 or 12 days" there, he said.

The dream soon went sour, however, and the families fled Syria in April 2016. Turkey then extradited them to Austria and the children were taken into care.

All four -- Hasan O. and his wife Kata O., Enes S. and his wife Michaela S. -- were convicted of belonging to a terrorist organisation and of mistreating and neglecting children.

They were sentenced to 10 years behind bars except Kata O. who was given nine years. All except Austrian-born Muslim convert Michaela S. were from Bosnia but all had Austrian citizenship.

The judge said that the sentences were intended to show "that the state of Austria won't accept something like this".

Austria has so far been spared the spate of Islamist extremist attacks suffered in recent years by other European countries.

However some 300 people from the 8.7-million-strong nation have travelled to Syria since the civil war there began, one of the highest numbers per capita in the European Union.


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Re: News from Austria

Post  bb1 on Sat Jun 03, 2017 3:49 pm

Horrible.

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Re: News from Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Sun Jun 11, 2017 7:57 am

Austria's burqa ban kicks in this October.

New Austrian legislation came into force on Friday that will ban the full-face Islamic veil in public places from October 1st.

The outlawing of the burqa or other clothing concealing the face follows similar moves in other countries in the European Union, starting with France in 2011.

In Austria, people who break the new law could be fined up to €150 ($168), according to the legislation approved by parliament in May and signed into law by the president this week.

Other measures include a clampdown on distributing extremist material, and immigrants being obliged to sign an "integration contract".

A 12-month "integration programme" will include courses in "values" and the German language. Failure to attend can result in cuts to social security payments.

The legislation was hammered out by the centrist government amid strong support for the far-right and the arrival of 90,000 asylum-seekers since 2015.

The "grand coalition" under Chancellor Christian Kern collapsed last month and early elections were called for October 15th.

The far-right Freedom Party (FPÖ), whose candidate came close to winning the largely ceremonial presidency last year, is riding high in opinion polls ahead of the vote.
https://www.thelocal.at/20170609/burqas-will-be-banned-in-austria-later-this-year
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Tourism sector believes burqa ban damages Austria's image.
https://www.thelocal.at/20170201/tourism-sector-believes-burqa-ban-damages-austrias-image
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Re: News from Austria

Post  bb1 on Sun Jun 11, 2017 8:40 am

Good for Austria - those things are an abomination.

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Re: News from Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Wed Jun 21, 2017 1:50 pm

Eleven men go on trial over the horrific deaths of 71 migrants found in a truck in Austria.

This photo from a Burgenland police press conference in September 2015 shows the pictures of suspected human traffickers arrested over the death of 71 refugees.

Eleven men go on trial on Wednesday over the horrific deaths of 71 migrants found in an abandoned truck in Austria nearly two years ago, in one of the most disturbing cases marking Europe's migration crisis.

The gruesome discovery of 59 men, eight women and four children crammed inside a poultry refrigerator lorry near the Hungarian border in August 2015 sparked widespread revulsion, and it highlighted the plight of refugees at the hands of merciless smugglers.

It also prompted countries along the now-shut western Balkan migrant route to open their borders to hundreds of thousands of people fleeing war and poverty, mainly in the Middle East.

The trial is being held in the Hungarian town of Kecskemet because authorities determined that the migrants' deaths had occurred in Hungary.

The defendants -- 10 Bulgarians, one Afghan and one Lebanese national -- are accused of human trafficking and torture.

Four have also been charged with "homicide with particularly cruelty" and face life imprisonment.

They include a 30-year-old Afghan identified as Samsoor L., thought to be the ringleader, and 26-year-old Bulgarian "death truck" driver Ivajlo S.

All have been in custody for nearly two years bar one suspect who remains at large and will be tried in absentia.

The court is expected to issue its verdicts by the end of the year.

Prosecutors claim that the men belonged to a ring that smuggled more than 1,200 people into western Europe at the height of the continent's migration crisis.

The group operated between February and August 2015, and brought migrants to Germany or Austria on a daily basis from June that year.

According to prosecutors, refugees were "often carried in closed, dark and airless vans unsuitable for passenger transport, in crowded, inhuman, excruciating conditions".

In the case of the 71 asylum seekers, investigators found they had "suffocated in horrendous conditions" shortly after being picked up near the Serbian-Hungarian border.

Some 59,000 pages of evidence have been gathered detailing the horror find on the side of the A4 motorway in Burgenland state on August 27th 2015.

An Austrian police patrol had spotted the deserted truck and noticed liquid dripping from the vehicle -- decomposing body fluids, as it would later emerge.

Inside, officers discovered a sea of tangled limbs squashed into a 14-square-metre (150-square-feet) cargo container.

Among the corpses was a baby girl, not even a year old.

Investigations showed that the victims -- all from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan -- had been dead for two days.

The extent of their ordeal was revealed in recently released transcripts of intercepted mobile phone conversations between the smugglers.

"They are screaming the whole time, you can't imagine what's happening here," the driver is quoted as saying in the transcripts obtained by German media.

The suspected Afghan boss orders him to ignore the suffocating people and keep on driving: "If they die... drop them off in a forest in Germany."

German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung reported that Hungarian police had intercepted the chats as part of an ongoing probe into the smuggling ring and failed to act.

But Hungarian officials said the conversations had not been listened to in real time but were recorded for later translation.

"If the Hungarian authorities had had a chance to stop this horrible tragedy, they would have done so," Hungarian prosecutor Gabor Schmidt told the SZ.

Of the 71 victims, all except one have been identified. Most were repatriated to their home countries, while a dozen have been buried at a Muslim cemetery in Vienna.

A day after the death truck discovery, Samsoor L. and his gang had loaded another 67 migrants into a refrigerator lorry and again driven to Austria.

"This time the migrants could kick the door of the load area open, thus no one had died," according to prosecutors.
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Re: News from Austria

Post  bb1 on Wed Jun 21, 2017 2:01 pm


An Austrian police patrol had spotted the deserted truck and noticed liquid dripping from the vehicle -- decomposing body fluids, as it would later emerge.


Oh my God!

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Re: News from Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Wed Jun 21, 2017 2:10 pm



The lorry - A4 also known as Ost Autobahn, near Pandorf in Neusiedl am See District, Burgenland.    This is the motorway I use when driving from here to Vienna.  LL
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Hitler house dispute rears its ugly head again

Post  Lamplighter on Thu Jun 22, 2017 3:04 pm

Austria: Dispute over who owns house where Hitler was born

VIENNA (AP) June 22, 2017 — A lawyer for the owner of the house where Adolf Hitler was born is disputing the government's right to take possession of the property in Austria's highest court, saying authorities are using the measure "like a club" because his client refused purchase offers from authorities that were too low.

The challenge is in response to a government bill to take the house after owner Gerlinde Pommer refused to sell it. Hitler was born in 1889 in the house in Braunau am Inn, a town on the German border. The government wants to remodel the property's facade to reduce its draw as a shrine for admirers of the Nazi dictator and to offer it to an agency that runs workshops for disabled people.

Ahead of the first day of Constitutional Court hearings Thursday, lawyer Gerhard Lebitsch questioned the timing of the government's move so long after World War II, noting that "they could have neutralized the site 40-50 years ago."

While the price offered by the state has not been disclosed, Lebitsch suggested it was too low, describing the offer as "half-hearted." In court, officials for the government argued that the state decided to seize the house after the owner refused to make alternations needed for use for workshops. They also said the state was confronted with unjustified rent increases while leasing the building previously.
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Re: News from Austria

Post  bb1 on Thu Jun 22, 2017 3:18 pm

Is it me, or has this squabble been going on for years?

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Re: News from Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Thu Jun 22, 2017 4:02 pm

bb1 wrote:Is it me, or has this squabble been going on for years?
Yup, this is about the 4th update I've posted up here. LL
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Re: News from Austria

Post  bb1 on Thu Jun 22, 2017 4:11 pm

Ah, I thought that, LL. And every time a solution appears to have been found, someone manages to find something else to complain about and they're back to square one?

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Re: News from Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Thu Jun 22, 2017 4:28 pm

bb1 wrote:Ah, I thought that, LL. And every time a solution appears to have been found, someone manages to find something else to complain about and they're back to square one?
Precisely.  Frau Pommer wouldn't sell it so the council took the case to the high court - mainly they want it stopped being a magnet for neo-nazi worshippers.    It would be easier if it was sequestered and pulled down and a carpark built over the site - much as they did in Spandau after Rudolf Hess, last nazi prisoner,  died there.    LL


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Re: News from Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Fri Jun 30, 2017 11:31 am

Vienna runway can go ahead despite climate change fears, court rules.

Austria's constitutional court on Thursday overturned a landmark ruling that had blocked Vienna airport's plans to build a third runway because of climate change worries.

Judges found that the earlier verdict had violated the constitution, noting that the environment did not hold "absolute priority" over other factors.

In February, the Federal Administrative Court (FAC) had argued that the project would result in a "significant" rise in greenhouse gas output, contravening domestic and international undertakings to reduce pollution.

Vienna airport appealed against the decision, which was also heavily criticised by Austrian businesses and a number of senior politicians.

The constitutional court said on Thursday that the FAC had committed several gross errors, including miscalculating the carbon dioxide emissions connected with the new runway.

The FAC must now issue a new ruling that takes into account these findings.

While Vienna's chamber of commerce and senior political figures welcomed the decision, environmental group Global 2000 warned that "the unrestrained growth of air traffic is not compatible with the goal of averting a climate catastrophe".

A key travel hub between western and eastern Europe, Vienna airport handled 23 million passengers last year and has been wanting to construct the runway for a decade.
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Re: News from Austria

Post  bb1 on Fri Jun 30, 2017 11:46 am

I do wish 'environmentalists' would stick to useful things like cleaning up beaches.

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HITLER HOUSE, LATEST UPDATE!!

Post  Lamplighter on Fri Jun 30, 2017 1:01 pm

Austrian court upholds government seizure of Hitler house.

VIENNA (AP) — Austria's highest court on Friday ruled the government was within its rights to seize the house where Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler was born in 1889 after its owner refused to sell it, saying the move was needed to give the state full control over plans to reduce its attraction for neo-Nazis.

The Constitutional Court ruled that the government had "full authority" to expropriate the house in Braunau am Inn, near the German border. The expropriation, it said, "was in the public interest, proportionate, and not without compensation and is thus not unconstitutional."

The government wants to remodel the facade of the property to rid it of any visual association with Hitler's birthplace and offer it to an agency that runs workshops for disabled people. Work is expected to begin this fall.

Owner Gerlinde Pommer had challenged the expropriation, saying purchase offers were too low. Her lawyer, Gerhard Lebitsch, said he assumed Pommer would now take the case to the European Court of Human Rights.
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Re: News from Austria

Post  bb1 on Fri Jun 30, 2017 1:20 pm


Owner Gerlinde Pommer had challenged the expropriation, saying purchase offers were too low. Her lawyer, Gerhard Lebitsch, said he assumed Pommer would now take the case to the European Court of Human Rights.


Oh, the irony....

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Re: News from Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Tue Jul 04, 2017 2:01 pm

Italy summons Austrian ambassador over threat of border controls.

Italy's foreign ministry summoned the Austrian ambassador on Tuesday after Vienna said it was considering introducing border controls to block migrants from passing between the two countries.

The ministry said the move followed "the declarations of the Austrian government concerning the deployment of troops to the Brenner Pass" on the border.

Vienna's defence minister was quoted on Monday saying his country would "very soon" impose border checks and deploy soldiers on its frontier with Italy if the influx of migrants across the Mediterranean does not slow.

"I expect that very soon border controls will be activated and that an assistance deployment (by the military) will be requested," Hans Peter Doskozil told the online edition of the Krone daily.

He was cited as saying that this move was "indispensable if the inflow into Italy does not ease". The newspaper said that 750 soldiers were available and that four armoured vehicles had already been sent to the area over the weekend.

Austria introduced checks on its eastern border with Hungary in 2015 and has readied physical measures such as barriers on its Italian border to the south-west, including at the famous Brenner Pass.

More than 85,000 migrants and refugees have arrived in Italy by sea this year, the UN refugee agency has said. More than 2,000 others have died or gone missing on the perilous crossing.

The comments from the centre-left Doskozil come ahead of early elections in Austria in October when the anti-immigration far-right is forecast to do well and potentially emerge as the biggest party.
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Re: News from Austria

Post  bb1 on Tue Jul 04, 2017 2:35 pm


Vienna's defence minister was quoted on Monday saying his country would "very soon" impose border checks and deploy soldiers on its frontier with Italy if the influx of migrants across the Mediterranean does not slow.


But what choice does Austria have if Italy insists on running a maritime taxi service from the coast of Libya to Europe?

I know Italy is now complaining about being 'swamped', but what else did they expect to happen? Italy has been irresponsible from the start of this, IMO.

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Re: News from Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Thu Jul 06, 2017 11:07 am

'Islamist motive' suspected in murder of elderly couple in Austria.

Austria's interior minister Wolfgang Sobotka said a Tunisian man suspected of murdering a couple in their home in Linz, Austria, is believed to have acted with an Islamist motive.

If confirmed, Friday's killings in the northern city of Linz – in which an 85-year-old woman's throat was slit and her 87-year-old husband was stabbed and beaten to death – would be the first Islamist attack in Austria, which has so far avoided the jihadist assaults seen elsewhere in Europe.

The killings “clearly had an Islamist background”, Sobotka told a press conference in Vienna on Wednesday, adding that the 54-year-old suspect, who handed himself in to police, “is clearly a radicalized Muslim”.

Police had said on Tuesday that the murders did not initially appear to be an Islamist attack, with investigators focusing on the theory that the suspect harboured resentment against society as well as Austria's far-right Freedom Party (FPOe).

He knew the victims, having regularly delivered their shopping from a shop run by his wife, and allegedly believed the elderly couple had links to the far-right.

But Sobotka told a press conference that the investigation had taken a turn after searches of the suspect's home and examination of his electronic data.

He declined to give further details on the evidence against the Tunisian, who had lived in Austria since 1989, or what he had said to investigators.

The Tunisian set fire to the couple's house before handing himself in to police, and remains in detention.

Chancellor Christian Kern urged an investigation “without delay” into the extremist threat to determine “where similar risks exist and how to combat them efficiently”.

While Austria has until now been spared the major attacks that have hit other European countries including France, Britain and Germany, a relatively high number of Austrians have left to wage jihad abroad.

The interior ministry estimates that 300 have quit Austria or tried to leave in order to fight in Syria or Iraq – a figure that is proportionately high in a population of 8.7 million.

There is no indication that the man suspected of murdering the elderly couple had travelled abroad to fight alongside extremist groups.

Most of those accused of jihadist links in Austria have been of Chechen or Bosnian origin.

Last year Austrian courts convicted 36 people of “belonging to a terrorist group”, including Mirsad Omerovic, a jihadist of Bosnian origin considered the central figure in Austria's extremist scene.

Austrain authorities have poured more resources into anti-terror operations since 2014, with 14 people arrested in January raids in Vienna and second city Graz, accused of links to Isis.

The same month, authorities announced they had foiled an imminent attack, arresting an 18-year-old Austrian.

Austria is gearing up for legislative elections in October, which are being closely fought between the social democrats, conservatives and the far-right.
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Re: News from Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Thu Jul 06, 2017 11:09 am

No need for border controls with Italy, says Austria.

Austria has sought to dampen a row with neighbour Italy after it prompted outrage from Rome by threatening to send troops to the border to stop migrants entering.

“There is no need to employ temporary border controls … with Italy,” a joint statement from Chancellor Christian Kern and his Defence Minister Hans Peter Doskozil said on Wednesday.

Doskozil on Monday caused uproar by suggesting that Vienna was prepared to mobilize troops along the main Brenner mountain pass through the Alps between Italy and Austria to protect his country from migrants.

In response, Italy summoned Austria's ambassador and Interior Minister Marco Minniti warned that Vienna's “unjustified” threat could impact security cooperation between the two countries.

Kern's media office told AFP he had spoken with Italian officials on Wednesday “to remove any misunderstanding”.

The United Nations' migration agency said this week that the number of people arriving in Europe after crossing the Mediterranean in 2017 had topped 100,000.

Italy has taken in nearly 85 percent – most of them sub-Saharan Africans crossing from conflict-ravaged Libya – and has pleaded for help from other European Union nations, saying it is struggling to cope.

Minniti said Wednesday that other EU countries should share the burden of the migrant crisis.

“It's difficult to think of an international rescue mission while leaving the problem of receiving (migrants) to a single country,” he told lawmakers in Rome.

Italy is hosting an international conference on Thursday aimed at tackling the ongoing migrant influx, as European Union ministers meet in Tallinn to discuss ways of better managing the crisis.
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Re: News from Austria

Post  bb1 on Thu Jul 06, 2017 11:20 am

IMO, Italy has been behaving most irresponsibly since this nonsense started, LL, 'rescuing' all and sundry virtually from Libyan beaches. And now, like Germany, they're complaining because no-one wants their spare party guests.

Encouraging this has meant nothing more than rich human traffickers, dead 'refugees' and social unrest in much of Europe. The road to Hell is paved with good intentions, etc....

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Re: News from Austria

Post  bb1 on Thu Jul 06, 2017 11:24 am

Just look at what the virtue-signallers and No Borders lunatics have done:

UN admits 7 out of ten migrants crossing the Mediterranean from Libya are NOT refugees as crisis sparks hostility and violence in Italy
The U.N. refugee agency says people smuggling and migrant flows in Libya are on the rise, so Europe may face increased flows of migrants and refugees
UNHCR says 84,830 migrants and refugees have reached Italy's shores so far this year from Libya, which is a 19-percent increase from last year
UNHCR says 'trafficking for sexual exploitation' seems to be increasing, particularly affecting Nigerian and Cameroonian women
The UNHCR launched a new report on migration trends in Libya today
It noted that a largely lawless Libya has become a major thoroughfare for migrants and organized crime rings are becoming internationalized


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4661866/UN-says-migrants-crossing-Libya-NOT-refugees.html#ixzz4m2tvn4lP
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

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Re: News from Austria

Post  Lamplighter on Sat Jul 08, 2017 8:03 am

Unesco puts Vienna's historic centre on 'in danger' list.


The historic centre of Vienna has been added to Unesco's list of sites in danger due to a high-rise project that the body says will undermine the area's value.

The project, still in its developmental phase, is set to extend over an area of 6,500 square metres just south of the famous 19th century Stadtpark with bisects the Wien river.

The plans include a huge hotel, luxury apartments in a high-rise tower, fitness and sports facilities, a new conference venue and a 1,000 square-metre indoor skating rink.

Open-air areas accessible to the public are also planned, which the city said will represent an architectural "improvement" in the area, giving it an "attractive" and "modern" feel.

The project, set to break ground in 2019, will also "enhance Vienna as capital of music", the city's ruling Social Democratic and Green party coalition said.

But the World Heritage Committee (WHC) took issue with the tower's height of 66.3 metres – downsized from the original 75 metres following protests.

The Committee, which is meeting in Poland, said the project "fails to comply fully with previous Committee decisions, notably concerning the height of new constructions, which will impact adversely the outstanding universal value of the site".

Unesco has capped the height limit for a building in the city centre at 43 metres.

The coalition argued that other post-war buildings in the area are either taller or of similar height to the proposed tower.

City officials reacted to the Committee's decision by saying they were determined to keep the city centre as a recognized World Heritage site, which Unesco designated in 2001.

The city has until next February to convince the Committee not to drop the label.

Local residents who oppose the project also worry about losing the Unesco World Heritage designation, which they say would act as an open invitation to more high-rises.

The city said there were no other such projects in the works.

"The historic centre of Vienna is rich in architectural ensembles, including Baroque castles and gardens, as well as the late-19th century Ringstrasse lined with grand buildings, monuments and parks," Unesco said of the site, adding that it "played an essential role as a leading European music centre".

But it has also warned that the city's "continuing development requires a very sensitive approach" that needs to keep in mind what makes the property so valuable, "including its visual qualities, particularly regarding new high-rise constructions".

By listing sites on the UN cultural organization's World Heritage in Danger list, Unesco seeks to mobilize the international community to protect them.

It lists two categories of dangers: either "ascertained" – specific and proven imminent threats – or "potential", when property faces threats which could negatively affect its world heritage value.

Adding a site to the list allows the allocation of immediate World Heritage Fund assistance to the endangered property and alerts the international community in the hope it will join efforts to save the endangered sites.
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